Countries around the world put forward an ambitious program to secure Foreign Direct Investments to their countries and states, including efforts to build new ports and other infrastructure facilities at the ninth edition of Annual Investment Meeting, which concluded today at Dubai World Trade Centre.
The Democratic Republic of Congo, which represents 37% of Africa’s hydro power potential, 23% of the world’s potential, 47% of Africa’s tropical forests and 6% of the world’s tropical reserve was one among the presenting countries at the global forum. In addition, Cameroon presented the benefits on investing in its country, given the strategic geographic location and access to regional markets of CEMAC, CEDEAO, SADEC and a well-managed private sector. With a growth rate of 4.1% and a literacy rate of 75%, Cameroon boasts of 7.3 million hectares of land with huge natural reserves. With a great coastline and seven national parks, the potential for tourism is also huge. The country also outlined several incentives in tax and customs to draw investments.
The Annual Investment Meeting also witnessed a presentation from Indonesia, the fourth most populous county with a young workforce. Being one of the world’s flourishing economies, Indonesia is all set to enter into the G-7 by 2020 and the 5th largest by 2030. The GDP of Indonesia is predicted to rise by 5.5% in 2019 from 5.1% in 2017, making it another interesting investor hub.
Several cities from China also presented at the global forum.The City of Tianjin, formerly known as Tientsin presented to investors several opportunities for investments.With more than 500 ports in over 180 countries and regions, Tianjin represents an important hub for material exchange between South and North China and leads in both aviation and aerospace industries.
In addition to Georgia, the UAE and its seven emirates also held a preferred position for foreign investments. GivenSharjah’s strategic location with easy access to the international airports and the availability of 2 seaports in the Arabian Ports, the emirate is one of the top preferred destinations for FDIs in the UAE. Similarly, Ajman with its strategic location, comparatively low cost of starting business, easy rules and regulations and strong infrastructure is another top destination for FDIs in the UAE.
The emirate of Ras Al Khaimah also highlight edits economic prospects underscoring some of its key features including initialising joint project in Hitch, innovation and sustainability, growth in manufacturing, tourism and green tech, as well as agriculture, health care and education investments.
Dubai also presented new avenues for investments. The city discussed potential investment opportunities across manufacturing, retail, tourism and hospitality and also underlined its international top ranking for trade and commerce.
In addition, Italy highlighted foreign direct investment (FDI) opportunities in the country and shared important economic features as well as investment data about the investment environment in Italy. The country highlighted various sectors including mechatronics and automotive, agri-food, construction, AI, ICT, health and well being, culture and creativity as major areas for investments.
In addition to country presentation, Invest In session was another important feature of the Annual Investment Meeting. Offering a platform to analyse a region’s economic landscape, Invest In session dissected the risks, challenges and opportunities in featured regions. This session assessed the economic landscape of national economies and its resulting impact on the regional economic ecosystem, while identifying areas and industries where economic growth can be expected.
One of the regions that presented at the forum was Africa. Cognizant of the developments and their relevance for African member states, the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) is working with the African Union Commission (AUC) on a Digital Identity and Digital Economy initiative to support member countries to fully harness the digital potential and to exploit the beneﬁts of digitalisation for the continent’s development.
Mr. Stephen Karingi, Director Regional Integration and Trade Division, UN Economic Commission for Africa said, “Digitalisation can help achieve interlinked development goals and aspirations in Agenda 2030 and Agenda 2063. The ECA supports digital id, digital trade and digital economy in Africa. With e-commerce in Africa growing at 40 percent annually, it is estimated to be over $300bn by 2025 and to promote this further, they launched a free digital trade area by 2018.”
In addition, high-level representatives from the government and the private sector from Latin America and Caribbean also presented and exchanged ideas about the greatest investment opportunities, challenges and initiatives carried out in their respective regions.
Jorge Sequiera, Managing Director, Costa Rican Investment Promotion Agency (CINDE), said, “While digital is the key to drawing FDIs, another key is attracting the right talent. If we have enough talent the companies will certainly invest. Emerging economies like ours have potential to create jobs when we create talent. The value proposition is different in each country and as a local market it is important for us to be accessible and talent rich.”